Friday, March 27, 2015

English Malt Vinegar Marinated Tri-Tip Steak Bits ... with Chips, Peas and Grilled Craft IPA Beer Bread

     English Comfort Food!
     Modern pub chefs often make use of classic French café food presentation styles.  Modern English pub chefs often place gourmet items on the special du jour board.  Dometimes English style variations of French food is featured.  Traditional regional British Isle favorites, items from exotic places from the British empire days or just plain old English pub chef's creations hit the special board too.  
     At a pub, the daily special board is a great promotional device.  The regular menu at most pubs is short and sweet.  Customers that frequent a pub a few times per week do get bored with the regular menu.  The daily special board offers new items everyday and this inspires customer interest.  The better the special sound on the board, the more tempting they will be for customers!
     I was the chef at an English pub for 2 years and I ran an aggressive daily special board.  I have a notorious reputation for offering the right choice of food as daily special at just the right time.  More often than not my daily special entrées outsold the regular menu items.  This is also true in nearly every French café that I worked in too.  This is evident in all of the food website that I publish, because about 75% of the recipes are actually items that I have successfully marketed as daily specials at restaurants during my career    

     Today's recipe is an example of simple English pub chef's special du jour creation.  I could post this recipe on the board on a Saturday afternoon and sell plenty of it by the end of the night. Saturday is the best day to sell a tasty beef item, especially tender Tri-Tip Steak Bits!
     Tri-Tip is a cut of beef from the lower sirloin section.  Because the sirloin strip and tenderloin are cuts of beef from the loin section that are in high demand, they command a high price.  The top sirloin and bottom sirloin in the loin section tend to sell for a lower price.  Unfortunately when any cut of beef becomes popular on a grand scale, the price goes up.  Currently Tri-Tip is at a peak in popularity and the actual consumer value is not quite as good as back when relatively few people knew about this cut of beef.  
     Tri-Tip Steaks from the loin section of beef usually only have to be marinated to increase tenderness and to add flavor.  Braising usually is not required to make a Tri-Tip steak tender.  The configuration of muscular grain of Tri-Tip meat grain is perfect for marination.  The meat grain tends to be loose, so a marinade easily penetrates this cut of beef.  A mildly acidic marinade is best and English Malt Vinegar is perfect for the task.

     English Chips are basically French Fries.  Traditional English chips are not cut with the French pont neuf precision cut that is used to make French Fries.  Traditional English Chips look like "chips off of the old block!"  The potato is simply cut into pieces that will cook quickly and fry evenly.  The chips should be odd shaped and they should be small enough to eat with one or two bites.

     English Malt Vinegar Marinated Tri-Tip Steak Bits:
     This recipe yields 1 portion!  
     Steak does not need to be swimming in a sea of marinade.  Only enough marinade is needed to coat the steak bits with flavor.  Too much acidic marinade can cause undesirable changes in the character of beef.
     Step 1:  Cut 10 ounces of Tri-Tip steak into bite size pieces. 
     Step 2:  Place the steak bits in a mixing bowl.
     Add 2 tablespoons of English Malt Vinegar.
     Add 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil.
     Add 1 pinch of rosemary.
     Add 2 pinches of thyme.
     Add 1/4 teaspoon of crushed black peppercorn.
     Add 2 pinches of Kosher Salt.
     Add 1/2 teaspoon of sugar.
     Step 3:  Toss the ingredients together.
     Chill the ingredients for 2 hours, so the flavors meld.

     Craft IPA Beer Bread:
     Follow this link to the recipe:
     • Craft IPA Beer Bread

     English Chips:
     Step 1:  Heat 6" of vegetable frying oil in a high sided pot to 360º.
     Step 2:  Cut 5 to 6 ounces of peeled russet potato in into odd shaped chips.  (large bite size) 
     Step 3:  Fry the chips for a few minutes, till they just start to become tender and so they are still white in color.
     Use a fryer net to place the chips on a wire screen roasting rack over a drip pan.
     Let the chips cool.
     Step 4:  Fry the chips a second time, till they are fully cooked and crispy golden brown.  (CGB!)
     Step 5:  Use a fryer net to place the chips on the wire screen roasting rack to drain off any excess oil.
     Season the chips with sea salt.
     Keep the chips warm on a stove top.

     Grilled IPA Beer Bread:
     Heat a griddle over medium/medium low heat.
     Cut 1 petite IPA beer bread loaf into 1/4" thick slices.
     Brush both sides of each slice with melted unsalted butter.
     Grill the beer bread on both sides, till it is toasted golden brown.
     Keep the the grilled beer bread warm on a stove top. 

     English Malt Vinegar Marinated Tri-Tip Steak Bits:
     Step 1:  Heat a sauté pan over medium heat.
     Add 1/2 tablespoon of vegetable oil.
     Add 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter.
     Step 2:  Remove the steak bits from the marinade and place them in the hot pan.
     Grill the steak bits on all sides, till they are cooked to the desired state of doneness.  (Medium/Medium Rare is best for Marinated Tri-Tip Bits.)
     Step 3:  Remove the steak bits from the pan and place them on a plate.  
     Keep the plate warm on a stove top.
     Step 4:  Drain the grease out of the hot pan.
     Place the pan over medium heat.
     Step 5:  Add 2 ounces of beef broth.
     Add 1 tablespoon of English malt vinegar.
     Add 1/2 teaspoon of sugar.
     Add sea salt and white pepper.
     Step 6:  Quickly deglaze the pan, as the jus reduces to a very thin glace consistency.
     Remove the pan from the heat.

     English Malt Vinegar Marinated Tri-Tip Steak Bits ... with Chips, Peas and Grilled Craft IPA Beer Bread:
     Pour the jus over the steak bits and on the plate.
     Place the Grilled Craft IPA Beer Bread Slices, the English Chips and a vegetable of your choice on the plate.  (Buttered Boiled Sweet Peas are a traditional English favorite!)
     No garnish is necessary!

     This English Malt Vinegar Tri-Tip Steak Bits Entrée can be served for lunch, low tea or a late night pub snack.  The flavors are uncomplicated, yet very tasty!  

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